KEPSA Energy and Extractives sector board discusses climate change

The Energy and Extractive sector board held its meeting on 8th September 2017.

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The key focus of the meeting was to discuss the effects of climate change, and how the sector can mitigate including embrace adaptation measures on the same.

Mr. Suresh Patel, who represents the private sector in the Climate Change Council, made an elaborate presentation on the causes of global warming, the biggest contributors being carbon dioxide, methane, hydrofluorocarbon, nitro oxide, perfluorocarbon and Sulphur hexafluoride

The various indicators of global warming include the rising humidity in the atmosphere, the rising sea levels, rising sea temperature, reduced snow cover and glaciers in the mountains. The adverse climate change effects are causing Kenya 2-3% gross domestic product loss. The loss is as a result of increased frequency of extreme weather conditions (drought, floods, storms) causing destruction of properties and crops, loss of fertile coastal land because raising sea level, increased incidences of pest and vector-borne disease and more unpredictable farming conditions

Mr. Patel highlighted Kenya’s journey towards addressing climate change which include:

  • Development of climate change response strategy 2011-12
  • Development of Kenyan Climate change Action
  • In 2016 climate change policy was developed and climate change act become operational
  • In 2016 the President nominated private sector to national climate change council
  • In 2017 the government has made climate change a thematic area in the medium term plan III

A key concern raised is the slow pace of implementation of these policies hence the anticipated results are not achieved. The proposal made was to have trees planted along every road and railway as a mitigation measure. Members also proposed that every project that requires cutting of trees should ensure other trees are planted elsewhere to reduce carbon emissions to the atmosphere.